April 13th, 2005

buzzed, B&W

Busy as a bee

Man, way too much going on in my life right now . . . recruiting is starting up, and it's super crazy already, DI Alumni stuff is kicking my butt, and I've dropped the ball on my role with NYSD. *sigh*

I drove to Missoula yesterday, and I realized I missed driving, only because I miss listening to NPR. I used to listen to the online stream, but realized that I couldn't work and listen to the stream. On yesterday's Morning Edition, there was a story about Teach for America and it's recruiting this year. Notable statistics from the story include 17,000 applicants for 2,000 positions, 11% (over 100 students) of Dartmouth's senior class applying, and a 40% increase in applicants. For those who didn't know, TFA used to be an AmeriCorps program, I've been rejected by them, though Tony got accepted on his second time through the process. Trying to find my post from last year about my TFA application, I stumbled upon this one that reminded me of how frustrated I was last April. (It's also pretty similar to where my friend is right now, and eerily close to a conversation I had with her at the bar last night.)

Anyway, on part of the drive, I couldn't pick up NPR, so I ended up listening to AM radio, and got to listen to Dr. Laura. There's a part of me that even misses listening to conservative talk radio, because I like hearing the other view point. Anyway, yesterday she mentioned this Washington Post article about how kids are using more and more profanity. The article matches my experience with teaching - that it offends many teachers, but you can't really discipline on language, as the administration has bigger fish to fry. My biggest issue with excessive use of profanity is that for many people, it's a crutch - that they lack the vocabulary to express themselves, so resort to using fuck and shit for every part of speech.

I finished my federal taxes online, and I'm actually getting a refund. I'm a little surprised, since I had some investment income, along with teaching, and my two VISTA positions. I still have to do Montana and Ohio taxes though . . .

I also got an e-mail this morning, saying I'd made it to round two for the National Teaching Academy. The email started off "Congratulations! I would like to invite you to the second round of the NTA application process. I was impressed with the thoughtfulness of your essays and the strength of your recommendation letters, and I am looking forward to meeting you in person." I just wrote a quick thank you note to the three who wrote the recommendations. Since the NTA is just getting started, I think that introduction wasn't just a form letter, and Eric (the founder) actually meant what it said.

Time to work on some DI Alumni stuff . . .
buzzed, B&W

Procrastination

Okay, so I don't want to work on DI Alumni Association stuff . . .

I recently read three articles from the Atlantic. They were Who Needs Harvard by Gregg Easterbrook, Lost in the Meritocracy by Walter Kirn, and The Truth about Harvard by Ross Douthat. (I was on a Harvard kick as I was thinking about b-school when I got the articles.) The first article is available online, the other two are too new, so I had to make copies at the library.

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buzzed, B&W

Day of Truth

Interesting. So in response to the Day of Silence ("a student-led day of action where those who support making anti-LGBT bias unacceptable in schools take a day-long vow of silence to recognize and protest the discrimination and harassment -- in effect, the silencing -- experienced by LGBT students and their allies"), it appears that the Alliance Defense Fund (a religious lobbying group?) has organized the Day of Truth. If nothing else, it raises the awareness of the issue, and in one sense, legitimizes the Day of Silence.

The PSAs they have mentions a student who apparently had a shirt expressing his anti-homosexuality view (apparently it said "Be Ashamed" on the front and “Our School Has Embraced What God Has Condemned” on the back.) Apparently he was even suspended for this. What the hell was he suspended for? He wore a shirt that expressed his opinion, and I'm going to say that it wasn't hate-driven. Yes, it's a message of non-acceptance, but it's no worse than many shirts that are out there. So the school lets students pass out materials during the Day of Silence, that actively promote acceptance of what some see as a sin, but then silences this kid?

Extreme liberalness is as bad as ultra-conservatism . . .

Bleh.